Dorset Travel Guide


Dorset is a county of great beauty, one of the many maritime counties in South of England along the English Channel.

The Dorset coastline stretches as far as Lyme Regis in the west to Christchurch in the east. A visit to Dorset is often described as having the best of both worlds. It sits along the coast with its beautiful beaches, but you are never too far from the rich countryside coupled with rural towns and old time English villages.

Being so close to both the seaside and the countryside you have a wide variety of accommodation types to choose from including self-catering beach houses, rural country B&B’s, and luxury hotels. Dorset has accommodation to suit all needs.

One of the many lasting memories of a holiday or short break away is finding somewhere nice to eat and experience new cuisine. Dorset has some of the finest food and drink in the UK, all using locally sourced produce. If its ale or wine you enjoy, take the opportunity to visit one of the many popular local breweries and vineyards, allowing you to follow the process from grain to glass.

If you are a fan of great literature and novelists, you will be interested to know that Dorset is the birth place of Thomas Hardy and also his final resting place. Lyme Regis was also a favourite holiday haunt of J.R.R. Tolkien.

Explore Hardy Country

Visitors to Dorset can take in Thomas Hardy country located within the Dorset Hills. Follow Thomas Hardy’s story from his place of birth, his home and then onto his final resting place. Along the way you will see the landscapes and see what inspired Thomas Hardy in his writing.

A trip to the town of Bournemouth is a must when in Dorset, a vibrant cosmopolitan town with a variety of shops award winning gardens and water sport activities for all ages. Bournemouth’s gardens are split into three areas of Victorian beauty. The lower gardens adjacent to the sea, the central gardens within the town centre followed by the upper gardens.

There are many festivals held in Bournemouth throughout the year including the annual Air Festival and, of course, food and drink festivals. Be sure to check and confirm dates before visiting.

Take a Step Back in Time

Located in Bovington is the incredible Tank Museum: a collection of armoured vehicles, from the first tanks ever built to the latest heavy armoured vehicles. It really is like taking a walk through history. The collection helps to depict the story of armoured warfare from the First World War to the present day. Aside from the vehicles there are talking heads giving first-hand accounts from those who fought in these machines.

Sculpture by the Lakes in Dorchester is also well worth a visit whilst in Dorset. The lakes are tranquil and beautiful with stunning sculptures to match. With picnic areas available take the opportunity to spend the day relaxing while on holiday in such a tranquil place.

While in Weymouth visit Nothe Fort. Take a history tour and learn about how the past has shaped the Weymouth of today. A visit helps discover the story of people who lived and died in the Dorset area.

Popular cities in Dorset

Weymouth which includes a sandy beach and heritage architecture as well as a small group of people
Known for Friendly people, Sea and Ports
With sandy beaches, rugged coastline, historic buildings and brilliant museums, Weymouth is one of Dorset's most appealing and diverse destinations.

Reasons to visit

  • Weymouth Beach
  • Weymouth Harbour
  • Chesil Beach
Durdle Door showing a bay or harbour, rugged coastline and a sunset
Known for Friendly people, Historical and Castle
Get away to quaint Wareham! Enjoy the castle, countryside and gardens.

Reasons to visit

  • Durdle Door
  • Lulworth Cove
  • Durdle Door Beach
Brownsea Castle featuring heritage architecture
Known for Friendly people, Beaches and Ports
Relax on one of Britain’s favorite beaches and amble along the coastal paths of this quaint town that has been inhabited since the Iron Age.

Reasons to visit

  • Poole Harbour